Olympic hopefuls gather for Golden Gloves boxing tournament in Lubbock

Published: Feb. 19, 2023 at 4:29 PM CST
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - Hundreds of boxing fans, fighters, and parents packed the Prima Vista event center Friday and Saturday night for the Golden Gloves Lubbock Regional tournament. In the future, these boxers from West Texas and Eastern New Mexico could be fighting on a much grander stage.

“All the boxers in the elite division in this tournament, that’s 18 years old and above, the ones that win here will qualify for the state championship, and the national championship, and perhaps an Olympic berth,” said Edward Hernandez, regional coordinator for Lubbock Golden Gloves.

This weekend’s event was a regional advancement tournament. Winners qualified for the Texas state tournament, which will be in Fort Worth in March. Since the group is part of USA Boxing, the athletes could punch their way to the Olympic Games in Paris 2024 or Los Angeles 2028.

“It actually starts right here! It’s very rare that you get to see that kind of talent in our area,” Hernandez said.

Competitors in the Lubbock regional have traveled from Amarillo, Lamesa, Seminole, and even as far as El Paso. Hobbs and Clovis, New Mexico were represented as well. Fighters got a chance to check out the elite competition and catch the next generation.

“We have some novice talent, some new boys that have just started, but they’re just now getting into the sport,” Coach Hernandez said.

When asked about the turnout, Hernandez says when fans purchase a ticket, they will get their money’s worth.

“It’s a sellout crowd. The people like the sport, they don’t get to see this level of competition very often,” he said. “They’re going to support their athletes, and just a good match, a good boxing match. The crowd will get into it.”

Some of Lubbock’s boxing clubs represented at the Prima Vista center include Crossroads Boxing, Gloves of Glory, Lubbock Boxing Club, and the Lubbock Warriors Boxing Tribe.

“It’s like every other sport. Some kids can’t play football, can’t play basketball, can’t play baseball, but they like this particular type of sport, and so when they seek it, they like it. They stay involved in it.”

The Texas tournament will take place at the Will Rogers Watt Area, beginning March 15.